The Hoard's Dairyman editorial team has a long standing tradition of being actively involved in the dairy industry, and many past editors had dairy farming roots that ran deep. That tradition continues on, as three of the four current editors of Hoard's Dairyman and several other staff members grew up on dairy farms and have families that are farming to this day.
Some administrative members of our team don't have as strong of a connection to the dairy industry. They do, however, spend their days working to serve dairymen around the world. To help bring to life the industry that they are working in, the editorial team of Hoard's Dairyman organizes a field day from time to time to give these staff members an up close and personal experience with dairy.
At this year's professional development event, staff members started out with a visit to Rock River Laboratory in Watertown, Wis., to learn about feed and soil testing. John Goeser, Director of Nutrition, Research and Innovation, showed the group around the lab and explained the testing processes.
The next stop was Flood's Dairy Farm in Oakfield, Wis. Dan and Wendy Flood milk about 90 cows on their certified organic dairy. After a stop in the milking parlor, our group headed out to the pasture where the Flood's graze their Holstein and crossbred herd.
Our team then headed to Vir-Clar Farm in Eden, Wis. The Boyke family milks 1,800 Holstein cows three times per day and houses their cows in freestall barns. One of the farm's owners, Katie Grinstead, gave a thorough tour of the farm, and the visit concluded with the opportunity to watch a calf being born.
The final stop of the day was Kelley's Creamery near Fond du Lac, Wis. Here, the Kelley family farms and makes their own ice cream, which they sell at their store.
The following slideshow includes images of the day's activities taken by our art director, Ryan Ebert. The Hoard's Dairyman staff extends their gratitude to the companies and farms that opened their doors to our group.
The author is an associate editor and covers animal health, dairy housing and equipment, and nutrient management. She grew up on a dairy farm near Plymouth, Wis., and previously served as a University of Wisconsin agricultural extension agent. She received a master's degree from North Carolina State University and a bachelor's from University of Wisconsin-Madison.